Issue No. 480 - 19 August 2010
New projects to boost Wanganui
Visitor Information Centre
The new Visitor Information Centre on the riverfront is scheduled to open on September 18.
The former Tearaway building at 31 Taupo Quay (pictured) is being revamped into a wonderful new facility that will be the first port of call for visitors, tourists and locals seeking information about our beautiful district.
In addition to i-SITE services, the building will house a Glass Gallery, showcasing the wealth of glass art that Wanganui is famous for. The building will also contain the 'Wanganui Story' – a video production outlining the colourful history of Wanganui and promoting the city as a tourist destination and family friendly city to relocate to.
On the first floor is an apartment/office suite area which will be tenanted, once the building is complete. This will provide a rental income for council.
The ground floor will house the i-SITE information area, a 'Wanganui Shop', café and public toilets. Part of the ground floor area is a flexible space and can be used for functions.
The enhancement of the Southern Entranceway to Wanganui is making great progress, with the official opening scheduled for September 24.
In 2008 the council identified the entranceway as a promotional impediment to the city and district, and also wanted to attract more traffic from the state highway into the CBD and town area to further boost the local economy.
Since then the council and New Zealand Transport Agency have been working to develop an attractive entranceway to Wanganui. The physical road works, which have included construction of a roundabout at the State Highway 4/Wikitoria Road intersection, are nearly finished.
Major work left to do includes the completion of the truck weigh station and rest area. A set of lit poles, ranging from 4 metres to 13 metres in height, will be located at the southern end of the truck weigh station. The feature will be highly visible at the start of the entranceway and will soften the impact of the weigh station. The visual impact will be particularly significant at night because of the lighting aspect of the poles.
Planting is under way and will be finished by September 10. The Encounter sculpture will be erected in the centre of the roundabout near the official opening date.
The project to bring softer water to Wanganui residents has taken another step with the soft water treatment plant building and pipe designs being completed. The plant will be located near the Westmere reservoirs.
Specialist equipment is being ordered. The system is called an "ion" exchange system and its treatment is compliant with the New Zealand Drinking Water requirements.
What it does is take some of the extremely hard water coming from Kai Iwi, softens the water and then mixes this with the rest of the supply. It does this by passing through specially designed vessels which contain tiny sodium covered resin beads. The calcium in the hard water coming into the system sticks to the beads. At regular times the beads are washed to remove the calcium through a process called backwashing. The cycle then starts again.
Minor construction on the treatment plant will begin soon. It is anticipated that major works will start in November.
Wanganui welcomes Chinese students
Deputy Mayor Dot McKinnon hosted a civic welcome in the Council Chamber. The 44 students and five staff are staying in Wanganui for a month and are being housed at the Wanganui Girls' College hostel. The students attend classes at Wanganui High School and Wanganui Girls' College, as well as visiting local and regional attractions.
XuZhou Number 13 Middle School is Wanganui High School's sister school and has been sending students to Wanganui since 2006.
Click on the image to see a larger version.
Sarjeant Gallery exhibition
Wanganui Glass 2010
As part of this year's glass festival, the Sarjeant Gallery is pleased to present a selection of work by glass artists who are currently living and working in Wanganui. The exhibition includes the work of students, recent graduates and well-established practitioners, all of whom explore the medium in challenging and engaging ways.
The exhibition is on at the Sarjeant Gallery until October 3.
Katie Brown's Essence 1 and 11, 2010 is pictured.
Instalment 1 due August 25
Wanganui district ratepayers are encouraged to pay their rates in full by August 25 to avoid a higher rates bill as a result of the GST rise from October 1.
People who pay their rates in full by August 25 will get a 2.5% discount. In addition, they will not have to pay the extra 2.5% GST which will be applied to instalments 2, 3 and 4 (GST will increase from 12.5% to 15% from October 1). The saving is estimated as around 4% of rates, or $74 on the average residential rate.
If your income is low to moderate then you may be eligible for a rates rebate.
To determine if you are eligible you will need to have details of your gross income earnings (before tax) for the tax period ending 31 March 2010. The rate rebate will be calculated on your income earnings and your 2010/11 Wanganui District Council rates and Horizons Regional Council rates.
Please contact the rates department for further information, phone (06) 349 0519.
Nominations for local body elections
Nominations for the local body elections close at 12 noon on Friday, August 20.
If you have any enquiries about the election process contact Noeline Moosman, Electoral Officer, phone (06) 349 0001.
Economic Impact Fund 2010/2011
Funding Round 1
Applications are being accepted for conferencing, events and business development initiatives that deliver significant economic benefits to the Wanganui City and District, taking place before 30 June 2011.
This year's Impact Fund contains $150,000 for allocation to these initiatives.
The purpose of the Impact Fund is to provide financial assistance, by way of grant, seeding finance or loan, to events (sports, recreational, cultural, arts and entertainment), business development initiatives and conference initiatives that benefit the Wanganui District economically. Last year the Impact Fund supported the jetsprints (pictured).
The Impact Fund has traditionally attracted applications specifically for events. This year we are also seeking applications for initiatives and projects focused on new economic opportunities with the following core criteria:
Full details of the funding criteria, included with the application form, are available from the Customer Services Desk, 101 Guyton Street, Wanganui or on this page.
Applications close at 5.00pm on Friday, 20 August 2010.
A further funding round will be held in October 2010.
Details about the following vacancy are available on this page:
For Our Kids Co-ordinator
We welcome members of the public to attend our meetings
Council – Monday, August 30 (Council Chamber, 3.00pm)
Youth – Monday, September 6 (4.00pm, Committee Room 2)
Agendas are available at the Customer Services Counter, Municipal Office Building, 101 Guyton Street, Wanganui and the Wanganui District Library two working days prior to the meeting.